Fine Antique Arms & Armour

Fine Early 18th Century Scottish Basket Hilted Broad Sword Ref: 019.17


Price: £5,880

Item Description:


A fine, well balanced, Scottish Basket Hilted Broad Sword dating to circa 1725. The fully formed basket is of bold manufacture, of highest quality artisanship, forged from thick metal parts, with lovely curves and pleasing form, typical of the best of this sword typw. The hilt is mounted with a fine, wide, broadsword blade. The sword is in complete and original condition.


The basket guard is made for right hand use and formed from a structure of thick, well formed, rounded bars. To the front a primary guard plate is pierced with triangles, circles, engraved with border line decoration to the sides and filed with merlons to the outside. Also to the front, an oval ring, the signature of a sword made for a horseman, is built into the front of the hilt. The secondary guard panels mounted to the front and sides are well executed with fretted edges and pierced with triangles and circles. Top to bottom, through the middle of each secondary panel, a shallow groove has been applied, flanked by narrower incised lines, a decorative feature known as "Glasgow" style fluting, and flanked by further lines.


Underneath, the blade shoulders fit into a groove cut into the cross bar which slopes slightly upwards towards the scrolled wristguard. The pommel is cone shaped with three sets of triple lines radiating from the tang button on the upper surface, the central groove to each set being wider than the two on the flanks, in similar manner to the decoration to the middle of the secondary guard plates. The three upper arms of the guard are securely tucked into a pronounced groove cut just below the pommel middle. The sword hilt is tight and secure.


The broad, tapering, double-edged blade is still sharp. A double fuller extends for 7.5 inches (19 cm) from the hilt on either side. Each fuller, at each extreme, near the hilt and at the fuller terminals, is incised with two circles separated by an oval. Between these features, to the middle, firmly punched letters are present. An incised line is cut between each fuller, and on either side, which terminate in a cross highlighted with dots 9.5 inches (24 cm) from the hilt. The original grip is of wood, spirally grooved and retains 80% of its shagreen cover, the surfaces now smoothed through much handling many years ago. The grip is still secure. The hilt also retains its original leather liner.


In this original condition, with no working life repairs, or later improvements, a sword of this nature is a rare survivor. The hilt and blade exhibit a light salt and pepper pitting and minor patches of age staining. It is left to the purchaser to decide on whether to clean the sword or enhance its features.


The overall length is 39 inches (99 cm) and the blade is 33 inches long (84 cm).


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